We’re bringing a fresh perspective to Massachusetts’ South Coast. Our quarterly magazine is your go to guide for our coast, from Little Compton to Buzzards Bay. We delve into the fascinating people, homes, food & restaurants, history, art, sailing & recreation and the hidden places of the South Coast.
We’re hard at work on our 2019 issues now. Drop us a line at [email protected] and let us know what you liked in our current issue or what you’d like to see more of. Sign up for regular email updates and be in the know for monthly specials and offers, like special meet-ups and discounts on local events.
Posted by Marlissa Briggett on June 28th, 2019
Welcome to July! It’s that month with so much pizzazz: fireworks, heat & sunshine! After you enjoy your Independence Day festivities, here are some special things to make the most of the month ahead. [Drum roll for this month’s 8 Great Things]
1. We Love Paloozas
Fall River is the place to be on July 11. Block-A-Palooza is back this summer featuring blues rocker Samantha Fish who has been called “a blues tornado.” The free festival hosts Fish and opening band The National Reserve in front of the courthouse in downtown Fall River. July 11, starts at 6 pm. 186 S. Main Street, Fall River. More here.
The Buzzards Bay Coalition gives adults a FREE introduction to sailing, accompanied by a sail in the very lovely Onset Bay (we’re partial to Onset Bay!) on their 14-foot RS Quest sailboats. July 11, 5:30 to 7 pm. Onset Pier, 184 Onset Avenue. Free but pre-registration is required. More information and registration info is here: https://www.savebuzzardsbay.org/events/adult-intro-to-sailing-jul-11-2019/
The Highland Foundation is offering free admission to over 100 Massachusetts museums this summer. Locally, Battleship Cove is free on July 19. Take advantage of the Highland Foundation’s generosity by visiting these South Coast treasures free of charge. And check out the list to see if there are some other places you may like to visit further afield. (See the list here.). Battleship Cove, 5 Water Street, Fall River.
We love the South Coast Brass Band! Join them for some New Orleans jazz and funky stuff at Gilda’s Stone Rooster. 8 to 11 pm, July 18, 27 Wareham Road, Marion. More here.
If you enjoyed David Paling’s account of becoming an oyster farmer at 63 years old in our Early Summer issue (check it out here), then join David and some of his Crooked River Farm crew as we motor over from Onset pier to his Wareham shellfish grant. A 2 hour trip will be filled with entertaining commentary from the farmers, shucking fresh oysters and tasting their oysters, which David calls the “oceanic version of the perfect Manhattan.” July 20, leaving on the Miss Chris from Onset Pier, Onset Avenue. 4 to 6 pm. $49 per person includes boat ride & oyster tasting ($44 for subscribers of our print magazine). Email [email protected] for more information and to reserve your space.
6. Mamma Mia!
We are already humming Dancing Queen. In its 30th season, the New Bedford Festival Theater presents the show that’ll have you smiling the whole way home. July 19 – 28. Tickets range from $39 to $65. The Zeiterion Theater, 684 Purchase Street, New Bedford. Buy tickets here.
Mayor Jon Mitchell kicks off his summer movie series at the Zeiterion Theater with the original Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory, starring Gene Wilder. Just like the old days: enjoy a movie on the big screen in plush velvet seats. The prices are like the old days, too. Just $3 per person. Thanks, Mayor Mitchell. July 31 at 7 pm. The Z, 684 Purchase Street, New Bedford. More here.
During those deep winter months, we dream of tree pose with a salt water vista. It’s the time of year to store up those views for the year. There are several classes that take advantage of the South Coast’s lovely historic areas & vistas. For instance, check out Zen Revolution at Fort Phoenix. $5 drop in fee Mondays, Wednesday and Thursdays at 6 or Saturdays at 8:30. Fort Phoenix, Fairhaven. See more here.
There you have it, our top picks for July on the South Coast! Wanna keep up with the coolest happenings each month on the South Coast?! Sign up for our free monthly newsletter right here!
Our early Summer issue is on newsstands now. It’s popping with great content (a Tiverton farmhouse that flirts with industrial style, the sport of Azorean whaleboating and the people behind it, behind-the-scenes with local dairy and oyster farmers, a fashion shoot in Padanaram Harbor, and lots more). If you want a copy delivered to your door with things you won’t see online, subscribe right here!
Or just help us spread the word about South Coast Almanac by sharing this post with your friends on facebook, twitter or by email.
Posted by Marlissa Briggett on June 20th, 2019
At 63 years old, Wareham’s David Paling decided to embark on a second career as an oyster farmer. He shared his story with us in the current print issue of South Coast Almanac and we’re reprinting it here. Settle in and read his story (and join us for a boat ride to his shellfish grant on July 20th — details below)…
On good days being an oyster farmer can feel like you’ve got the best job in the world. When cool weather and low tides sync, and your boat is running well, and the tasks that day are not back-breaking, and all around you have hundreds of thousands of happy oysters suspended in their floating bags silently gobbling up planktonic food and growing like crazy, it is easy to reach the level of happiness that is elation. The miracle of farm raising Crassostrea virginica — Eastern oysters — can do this. Bliss comes in many forms: an hour or two wading in quiescent water and finding nothing wrong with gear, nor any evidence of human or natural predation; the freedom of being the master of your own liquid domain, driven by tide and weather rather than artificial schedules imposed by more traditional occupations; the thrill of seeing your crop — fingernail sized when you bought them from a hatchery — achieve the three-inch length, deep-cupped status required by today’s market forces; the wonder of nature all around you with cobalt skies and shimmering sun overhead and teal water below giving life to the likes of so many species. The list is simply too long to capture. In times like these, the work doesn’t seem like work, and you feel lucky to be amidst these marvels, a part of the ecosystemic, global spin.
But there are bad days as well, and it becomes quite clear that oyster farming is not easy money and physically not something that anyone can get up from their chair and do. To wit: Steve Patterson and myself, general partners and owners of Crooked River Shellfish Farm, have accidentally dumped our oysters on the substrate by miscalculating the mesh size of our containing bags. We’ve had closure flaps fail, spilling yet more of our young spat along the shallow bottom. We’ve bounced our boat — the ‘All In’ — off the docks. We’ve gone home bleeding from contact with razor-sharp barnacles and oyster shell edges. There have been other low points. The first day we found dead oysters, natural victims of the expected mortality rate dealing with them, I got a whiff for the first time of this necrotic slop and it smelled as bad as, no worse than, a dead oyster. The constant repetitions of hoisting some 183,000 oysters in and out of the boat for culling purposes has escalated degeneration and my arthritis has me hurting from topgallant mast to stern. And once, when replacing the drain plug after emptying the boat of sea water at full throttle, I threw myself, my wife and oldest daughter Carly all out of the ‘All In’ when it took a violent right turn the moment I let go of the wheel.Read More
Posted by Marlissa Briggett on May 31st, 2019
“I wonder what it would be like to live in a world where it was always June.” Anne Shirley, Anne of the Island
Well folks, we have the next 30 days to pretend we live in a world where it’s always June, that lovely doorway into summer days! And just to add a little icing on the cake of this great month, we give you 8 Great Things to check out in June.
If you’ve seen our current print issue, you know that Azorean whaleboats create great fun and community. Here’s your chance to check them out, up close and personal. They’ll be at Onset Beach this Saturday for the Onset Rowing Challenge to support the Buzzards Bay Rowing Club’s Scholarship Fund. Watch the teams compete in a 3-mile row that takes you out to the mouth of the canal, by way of Wickets Island and returning on the opposite side of Wickets Island. Kayaks, canoes, rowboats and dories can join in the fun. June 1, 2019. Onset Beach, Onset. 10 am. More info here. $20 per race participant. Free for spectators! (Bonus: South Coast Almanac will be there with our current issue!)
An evening walk through the Southeastern Massachusetts Bioreserve will likely yield some great turtle sightings as this is the right time of year for laying eggs. And — who knew?! – when female turtles are laying their eggs, ain’t nothing going to mess with their focused efforts to reproduce, which allows for a closer approach. June 8 at 7 pm. Participants will meet at Fighting Rock Corner at the intersection of Wilson, Blossom, and Bell Rock Roads, Fall River for a 1 mile walk in the Southeastern Massachusetts Bioreserve. See more here. Free!
We just love the Narrows’ new take on weekend festivals. They got together to decide what they liked to do on Saturdays (eat, drink some wine, visit a farm stand, listen to good music) and decided to put it all together for a festival, free and open to the public. Go between 12 and 1:30 for the Boardwalk Ramble to stroll along the waterfront listening to live musicians play genres ranging from jazz and blues to rock and folk. June 8, 10 to 3. Narrows Center for the Arts, 16 Anawan Street, Fall River. More here.
Paleo. Whole 30. Ketogenic. Who even can keep up with all the diet trends? Let’s forget about all of them and get some thoughts on nutrition from Fred Provenza, a big deal in the animal behaviorist’s world who comes to the South Coast courtesy of the Marion Institute. He’ll reflect on feeding body and spirit in a world of change (after we appropriately feed on some light refreshments at the pre-talk reception). June 13. 6 to 8:30 pm. Weatherlow Farm, 845 Sodom Road, Westport. More here. $15 before the event/$20 at the door. Tickets may be purchased here.
We had a rollicking good time at our first walking book club last November (see a recap here). We start our 2019 series of walking book clubs at Betty’s Neck in Lakeville where author Susan Bernhard joins us for a little walking, talking and reading from Winter Loon, her debut novel. Join us as we explore the novel by immersing ourselves in an outdoor space that evokes some of the novel’s critical scenes.
Participants need not have previously read the book to enjoy the tour. Saturday, June 15, 2 to 4 pm. Betty’s Neck, 59 Long Point Road, Lakeville. In case of bad weather, we’ll meet at the Lakeville Library at noon. Free thanks to our sponsors: Partners Village Store and the Friends of the Lakeville Public Library but we ask that you pre-register on our Facebook event page or by emailing us at [email protected]
Can you imagine a festival celebrating everyone’s favorite things? The Coastal Wineries did and it’s taking place this month at the Westport Fairgrounds where they’ll gather ALL 13 Coastal Wine Trail wineries under one roof, along with samples of cheese, chocolates. We’ll say it again: wine, cheese, chocolate — we really don’t think we need to add anything to this description. 200 Pinehill Road, Westport. Saturday, June 15, 11 to 8:30. Various prices, starting at $17.50. For more information, see here.
Fairhaven starts its annual free fitness in the park series on Tuesdays (yoga) and Thursdays (summer boot camp). This yearly event keeps growing and for good reason. The instructors, the setting, the community are all great! Tuesdays & Thursdays, 8:30 a.m., Cushman Park, Green Street, Fairhaven. June 18 thorough August 22. Free thanks to generous sponsors! See more here.
We’ve got a South Coast Almanac team in this year’s Buzzards Bay Coalition annual swim. Come cheer us on! We’ve always wanted to swim across New Bedford’s Harbor and when we heard that the Coalition tries to time it so the currents push you along, we thought we’d give it a shot. More importantly, we hear there’s a great party on the other side. Fun fact: you can go to that shindig whether you swim or not! June 22, leaving at 7 a.m from the beach at the former Edge Restaurant, 1480 East Rodney French Blvd., New Bedford. Finish line celebration is from 7:30 to 11 a.m. at Fort Phoenix State Park in Fairhaven (though we want to know if any swimmers will be there by 7:30?!) See more here.
Wanna keep up with the coolest happenings each month on the South Coast?! Sign up for our free monthly newsletter right here!
Our May issue is on newsstands now. It’s popping with great content (a Tiverton farmhouse that flirts with industrial style, the sport of Azorean whaleboating and the people behind it, behind-the-scenes with local dairy and oyster farmers, a fashion shoot in Padanaram Harbor, and lots more). If you want a copy delivered to your door with things you won’t see online, subscribe right here!
Or just help us spread the word about South Coast Almanac by sharing this post with your friends on facebook, twitter or by email.